New AMD eye drops could avoid painful injections

Research lead Dr Felicity de Cogan from the university’s Institute of Microbiology and Infection revealed her team has invented a method that has had a similar therapeutic effect as the injected drugs in animal models.“For several years, our team has focused on the challenge of delivering drugs to the back of the eye. From the outset, we realised that delivering drugs through eye drops would mean that patients can administer their treatment thselves, and this would be less costly, save time for patients and healthcare providers, and reduce the potential complications that can arise from injections,” de Cogan said.{{quote-A:R-W:400-I:2-Q:“Cell-penetrating peptides will drive the next generation of treatment for people with AMD.”-who: Robert Scott, UB}}The technology involves using a cell-penetrating peptide that delivers the drug to the retina, for which pending patents are currently owned by US-based transformative therapy company Macregen.“We have shown that the eye drops work in the larger mammalian eye, and we welcome the commercial investment and expertise from Macregen so we can deliver a structured research and development program that should bring concrete benefits to people with AMD and eye diseases,” de Cogan said.The researchers are expediting proof of concept studies to confirm the validity of the therapeutic approach, and clinical trials will likely follow soon after these studies are completed, possibly as early as 2019.“Cell-penetrating peptides will drive the next generation of treatment for people with AMD,” Professor Robert Scott, Honorary Professor of Ophthalmology at UB said.“They will be transformative for patients who currently have to organise their lives around monthly clinic visits for uncomfortable intraocular injections, who will in the future have the convenience of self-administering their medical treatment.”